Alumnus receives Early Career Award

College of Engineering
Photo by Scott Butner, PNNL

Materials Science and Engineering alumnus Arun Devaraj is one of 76 recipients nationwide to receive a 2020 Early Career Research Program award from the Department of Energy. The award comes with five years of research support for Devaraj totaling to about $2.5 million.

While at UNT, Devaraj studied experimental and computational material science under the advisement of University Regents Professor Raj Banerjee and Department of Materials Science and Engineering Associate Professor Srinivasan Srivilliputhur.

“My PhD thesis was focused on understanding titanium alloys, which are high strength, extremely low weight materials of interest for decreasing weight in automobiles,” said Devaraj. “I used powerful electron microscopes, atom probe tomography and synchrotron x-ray diffraction to analyze phase transformation of the titanium alloys. I then correlated the experimental results with theoretical computation under my computational research advisor.”

Now, at PNNL, Devaraj will use the award funds to explore how hydrogen, combined with stress and oxidation, leads to catastrophic failures of high-strength steels widely used in the nuclear and automotive industries.

“The unique experience of working in both experimental and computational material science during my PhD research at UNT prepared me to efficiently interface between these two complementary areas while working at PNNL,” he said. “I also got to use the fundamentals of material science and metallurgy I learned from UNT to continue to pursue advanced research on nationally important problems in PNNL.”

Read more on PNNL’s website.

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